Barack Obama on Narendra Modi


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MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           APRIL 17, 2015           01.25 A.M.

This is not an original blog written by me. It is profile of our Prime Minister Narendra Modi  , written by the 44th President of U.S.A. for magazine. The 166-word piece, written as part of the magazine’s annual ritual of coming out with its list of 100 Most Influential People is being re-produced here.

India’s Prime Minister “transcends the ancient and the modern,” writes President

 

 

 

The article written

by

Barack Obama

Narendra Modi
By Barack Obama

India’s reformer-in-chief

As a boy, Narendra Modi helped his father sell tea to support their family. Today, he’s the leader of the world’s largest democracy, and his life story—from poverty to Prime Minister—reflects the dynamism and potential of India’s rise.

Determined to help more Indians follow in his path, he’s laid out an ambitious vision to reduce extreme poverty, improve education, empower women and girls and unleash India’s true economic potential while confronting climate change. Like India, he transcends the ancient and the modern—a devotee of yoga who connects with Indian citizens on Twitter and imagines a “digital India.”

When he came to Washington, Narendra and I visited the memorial to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. We reflected on the teachings of King and Gandhi and how the diversity of backgrounds and faiths in our countries is a strength we have to protect. Prime Minister Modi recognizes that more than 1 billion Indians living and succeeding together can be an inspiring model for the world.

————————————————————–

Shortly after the article appeared on the Time magazine’s website, Prime Minister  Narendra Modi took to Twitter to express his gratitude at the rare gesture :

Dear your words are touching & inspiring. Thanks .

 

 

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I am happy that our Prime Minister is being honoured by world-famous magazine and is being written about by the most influential man on this earth, the President of United States of America .

On behalf of all the students & staff of VIDUR Acting Institute , VIDUR Editing Studio , VIDUR Club and VIDUR Merchandise, I congratulate our Prime Minister  Narendra Modi  .

May he attain greater glories in future!!

 

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Lal Krishna Advani & Dilip Kumar


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MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           SEPTEMBER 19 , 2013           11 . 10 P.M.

I wanted to write this blog a week back , when Shri Narendra Modi was anointed as the Prime Ministerial candidate of Bharatiya Janata Party . But I was busy writing an article on Mahamana Madan Mohan Malaviya for a Kenyan magazine , which is published from Nairobi , capital of Kenya . Yesterday I mailed that article to Shri Ram Chandra Pandey , Pracharak of Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh , Kenya . Today , as I am relatively free , I am sitting in my study and writing this blog .

I am a fan of Dilip Kumar . My veneration for him knows no limit . In his career spanning 54 years [ when he was working and was active ] , he has done only 59 films [ including Guest appearances ] . Out of his 59 released films , I have seen 45 . I have seen many of his films several times . Ironically I have not seen his first film Jwaar Bhata ” [ 1944 ] and his last film ” Quila ” [ 1998 ] .

Let us have a look on his career and achievements . He was nominated 18 times for the Filmfare Awards , and won it 8  times . He was awarded Padma Bhushan in 1991 , Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 1994 and was a nominated member of Rajya Sabha also for one term . In 1998 he got Nishan – E – Imtiaz from the government of Pakistan .

His towering and gigantic personality hovered over my horizon from Ganga Jumna ” [ 1961 ] , which I watched in 1967 , till today , when he is recuperating in the ICU of Lilavati hospital .

Thus from 1967 to 2013 , it is a 46 – year – long association full of reverence , veneration and respect . It refuses to ebb .

English: I took this picture when he paid a vi...

Dilip Kumar in MouthShut.com office in 2006 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But Dilip Kumar’s benign and all-pervading shadow on my life was disturbed and somewhat eclipsed with the advent of Amitabh Bachchan in 1969 . From Saat Hindustani ” [ 1969 ] to ” Satyagraha ” [ 2013 ] , he has acted in 186 films [ including Guest appearances & Voice overs ] . And out of 186 , I have watched 120 films . ” Anand ” [ 1971 ] was the first film of Amitabh Bachchan , which I watched . Ironically I have not watched his first film ” Saat Hindustani ” [ 1969 ]  and his latest ” Satyagraha ” [ 2013 ] . An uncanny coincidence of my life , which happened in the case of Dilip Kumar also .

The Amitabh Bachchan juggernaut , in real sense of the term , started with ” Zanjeer ” [ 1973 ] . One year later Dilip Kumar came with a critically acclaimed but flop ” Sagina ” [ 1974 ] .

Two years after ” Zanjeer ” [ 1973 ] , Amitabh Bachchan gave two iconic super hits , ” Deewar ” and ” Sholay ” [ 1975 ] . Again one year later Dilip Kumar came with triple role in a much – delayed and moderate hit  ” Bairaag ” [ 1976 ] .

After hiatus of 5 years , Dilip Kumar started his second innings with hugely successful ” Kranti ” [ 1981 ] . But same year Amitabh Bachchan gave 3 super – hits ” Lawaaris ” , ” Yaraana ” and ” Kaalia ” [ 1981 ] and hugely likable ” Silsila ” [ 1981 ] .

They both , a year later , came together in critically acclaimed , highly likable but a box office dud ” Shakti ” [ 1982 ] .

Dilip Kumar last came in ” Quila ” [ 1998 ] and 2 years later Amitabh Bachchan started his second innings  with hugely successful ” Mohabbatein ” [ 2000 ] . And the juggernaut , which started with ” Zanjeer ” [ 1973 ] still continues unabated in 2013 also .

Thus from  ” Anand ” [ 1971 ] to ” Satyagraha ” [ 2013 ] , it is a 42 – year – long association of me with Amitabh Bachchan also .

Let us have a peek in the other achievements of Amitabh Bachchan . He briefly dabbled in politics and was member of the 8th Lok Sabha . He got Padma Shri in 1984 and Padma Bhushan in 2001. His achievements in the film world are no less spectacular compared to Dilip Kumar . He has got 3 National Awards and unbelievable 39 Filmfare nominations in several categories , though Dilip Kumar holds the record of winning 8 Filmfare trophies .

But I must admit with all honesty that despite his unprecedented and unbelievable accomplishments , acceptance of Amitabh Bachchan was not easy for me . Though I watched his films with much admiration and appreciation , and as stated earlier , I have watched 120 films of Amitabh Bachchan but my hero , my idol was always Dilip Kumar .

Amitabh Bachchan

Amitabh Bachchan at IFFA Award 2006 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

And I think being a fan and admirer of Dilip Kumar does not mean that I don’t accept Amitabh Bachchan’s persona or demean it . They both hovered on my horizon . They both influenced me immensely . I am a fan of both of them but it is also a fact that Dilip Kumar reigns supreme and stands few notches higher .

Coincidently photographs of Dilip Kumar and Amitabh Bachchan , which I have posted here , were clicked in 2006 .

English: cropped photograph of L K Advani with...

L K Advani outside his residence. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Same is the case with Shri Lal Krishna Advani . I first heard of him in 1967 when I was in High School . 1967 is the same year when I came to know about Dilip Kumar through his film , a golden jubilee hit ” Ganga Jumna ” . So in an uncanny way my association with Dilip Kumar and Advani ji started in the same year , 1967 .

Advani ji became my political hero during my school , college and university days . I came to know Dilip Kumar when Amitabh Bachchan was yet to make his debut . In the same way when I started admiring Lal Krishna Advani , Shri Narendra Modi was yet to make his debut in politics .

Shri Narendra Modi , just like Amitabh Bachchan , has spectacular achievements to his credit . Shri Narendra Modi , just like Amitabh Bachchan , is hugely popular . Shri Narendra Modi , just like Amitabh Bachchan , is continuing with his unstoppable juggernaut . Shri Narendra Modi , just like Amitabh Bachchan , is the current idol and is liked by the cadre immensely .

English: Narendra Modi in Press Conference

Narendra Modi in Press Conference (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But as I have said earlier , in my heart Dilip Kumar still reigns supreme . And being a fan of Dilip Kumar is in no way an insult to Amitabh Bachchan . Admiring Dilip Kumar is in no way derogatory to Amitabh Bachchan . In the same way my political hero is Shri Lal Krishna Advani . And being a Lal Krishna Advani admirer is in no way an insult to Shri Narendra Modi .

It is just a question of whom you grow with . Your hero of growing years is going to be your hero till your last breath .

Shri Narendra Modi , just like Amitabh Bachchan , is the current favourite . But it doesn’t mean that Dilip Kumar and Lal Krishna Advani have no relevance or have no achievements to their credit . I like Shri Narendra Modi and Amitabh Bachchan for their achievements , but I idolize Dilip Kumar and Lal Krishna Advani for their glorious innings and immense contribution in their respective fields .

I again assert that being an admirer of Advani ji does not make me an automatic hater of Modi ji . Persons like me who have admired Advani ji all their life , can’t accept a new icon in one night . It is going to be a slow and difficult process . This was the case with Amitabh Bachchan also . But gradually Amitabh Bachchan’s all-pervading shadow inundated me completely . Slowly and eventually same will definitely happen with Modi ji also . But till then Advani ji is my political hero as Dilip Kumar is my screen idol .

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I told this story to all the students and staff of VIDUR Acting Institute , which is known as Vidur’s Kreating Charakters  . Today I am expressing it for the followers of my blog and general public , who visit my blog space .

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MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA

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Narendra Modi & His Detractors


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MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           DECEMBER 20, 2012           08.00 P.M.

I believe in democracy and thus I firmly believe in the saying of Voltaire , which I have given below :

“I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it .”  – Voltaire

Then what to do with false , abusive and malicious campaign . Here I admire the way Shri Narendra Modi deals with his detractors . He concentrates on his work and ignores the acerbic spleen of his nay – sayers .

English: Narendra Modi in Press Conference

Narendra Modi in Press Conference (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

He once famously said, ” A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him. “

38 Godhra Station.psd.jpg

It explains the enigma of Narendra Modi . Today he has won the third consecutive term in Gujarat . He is condemned , vilified and demonized since Godhra riots . But continuously winning election in 2002 , 2007 and now in 2012 and that too decisively and single – handedly , is by no means an unimportant achievement .

Districts of Gujarat

Map of Districts of Gujarat (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Gujarat has now become synonymous with Shri Narendra Modi . He now represents the province completely . But it took many years of agony – filled existence . It took many painful nights and colourless mornings . But today public gave the verdict and its for all to see . Now it is a permanent death-nail in the coffins of his detractors .

I think that people are the final judges and they give decisive verdicts . Public can never be ambiguous . They can never be wrong . Though sometimes they do take longer time to decide .

Today as I write this blog and simultaneously reading the tweets about Gujarat election , I am convinced that Modi detractors have bitten dust and they have eggs on their despicable faces . Nay – sayers will never be silenced but after the verdict of 2012 , no one will believe them any more .

I told acting students of my acting class  Vidur’s Kreating Charakters , that in this film line they will get more detractors than fans or friends . And here they should always be careful who they call their friends . It’s always better to have 4 quarters than 100 pennies . They should not feel humiliated or disheartened by the acts of their detractors .They should always wait for public verdict .

In such cases public verdict comes and it comes pretty soon .

VIDUR

MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA

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Kokrajhar Riots & The Tyranny of Distance


MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA           SEPTEMBER 06 , 2012           12.55 P.M.

Rajdeep Sardesai at IIM Kozhikode in March 2008

Rajdeep Sardesai at IIM Kozhikode in March 2008 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Kokrajhar in Assam is reeling under communal violence . Demography of Assam is getting changed or rather it is being changed . Assam is fast changing and changing for worst . Assam is in trouble but no one is paying attention . They say that Assam is very far off and inaccessible . So in the words of Mr. Rajdeep Sardesai ” tyranny of distance ” is the main cause of this criminal neglect . And if Assam is in trouble can other states of North East India be far behind ?

In the age of internet , when twitter , Facebook and blogs are the order of the day , is this theory ” tyranny of distance ” convincing enough ? Or is it a ploy to avoid some troublesome questions , some unpleasant truths ?

Why ” tyranny of distance ” , which is so convenient for Kokrajhar , did not apply to Gujarat ? Why even the minutest details of post Godhra riots were aired repeatedly and why gory scenes were played on the television over and over again ? If the reportage on Gujarat riots were prerogative of a journalist then Kokrajhar should also be reported . And if Assam in general and Kokrajhar in particular is too distant , then Gujarat is also not the immediate neighbour of New Delhi .

Apart from ” tyranny of distance ” theory , Mr. Rajdeep Sardesai came with another brilliant ( ? ) theory for not reporting Kokrajhar riots . He tweeted that since more that thousand people got killed in Gajarat riots and less than hundred got killed in Kokrajhar , so reporting about Kokrajhar is not that important . Can a riot be termed as important and unimportant ? Is a riot less important because less than thousand people got killed ? He did tender apology after public outcry , but his hypocrisy was there for all to see .

English: Image of Narendra Modi at the World E...

English: Image of Narendra Modi at the World Economic Forum in India (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If Narendra Modi , the Chief Minister of Gujarat is responsible for Gujarat riots , then same yardstick should be applied to Tarun Gogoi , the Chief Minister of Assam also . And if Tarun Gogoi is not directly responsible for Kokrajhar riots , then how come Narendra Modi is guilty of Gujarat riots ?

@ Brahma Mandir, Kokrajhar

@ Brahma Mandir, Kokrajhar (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Countryside in the Bodo area of Assam

Countryside in the Bodo area of Assam “Udalguri and Kokrajhar are considered the center of the Bodo area.” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: see filename

Assam (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Bodos are tribal of Assam . Landscape of Bodoland is divine . The tribal culture of Bodos are in danger . So they are up in arms against the Bangladeshi immigrants . Because of vote bank politics provincial government is not paying attention or rather ignoring the menace . And even after riots , a cover up operation is going on . Now Mr. Rajdeep Sardesai is talking about the need of sensitivity for the Assam victims but he totally forgot to maintain that sensitivity for the victims of Gujarat riots .

I am not defending Gujarat riots . No sensible person can defend such acts . But there should be one yardstick for all the acts of crime . It should not be the case of good riots and bad riots . It should not be our riots or their riots . Riots are riots and they should be condemned in equal measures and with same force and vehemence .

That is the reason I fail to understand the logic of Mr. Rajdeep Sardesai and other secular like him . I condemn their hypocrisy . There cannot be and should not be two yardsticks for the same communal ( ? ) crime . If Gujarat is still remembered , so should be Kokrajhar . If BJP is communal , so is the Congress , Indian National Congress .

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